Florida is famous for its beautiful sunny beaches and relaxing pools. When you imagine happy children playing in the water, you may also picture floaties and pool noodles. But when it comes to safety—and peace of mind for parents—nothing compares to teaching kids to be confident swimmers.
That’s why Big Blue Swim School is actively looking to add up to 40 locations across Florida in cities including Miami, Tampa, Sarasota, Orlando, Jacksonville, and the southwest region. This expansion would create 20 to 30 full-time management, instructor and support staff jobs at each new location.
Michael Chin, Vice President of Real Estate for Big Blue Swim School, said that the brand is currently building pipelines for development in Florida. “We are ready to go as soon as we find the right franchisees,” said Chin, adding that the younger population is increasing, especially in the southern regions, which is very positive for sustainable growth of the business.
Scott Thompson, Chief Development Officer for Big Blue Swim School, said that Florida is an exciting market for the leading swim lesson franchise because many pools are open year round. “Many homes have pools in Florida, so safety is absolutely critical. We feel that parents are more receptive to having their kids learn to swim down there than in many other parts of the country,” he said.
Chin noted that despite the huge popularity of water activities, there are surprisingly few swim schools in Florida. “It’s an underserved market. We have to get awareness out there about the importance of swimming lessons,” he said. “At the end of the day, there is a lot of water in Florida. We need a presence here so that we can teach children to swim and feel confident in the water.”
Thompson emphasized Big Blue Swim School’s unique approach to not just teach kids how to swim, but to work toward something bigger and greater: self-actualized confidence that translates to all other aspects of young swimmers’ lives.
“We use swimming as a way to build confidence for kids long-term. We use distances as markers of progress, which makes each accomplishment more of a milestone. When a kid knows for a fact that they can swim five feet as a beginning swimmer, it makes it all the more impactful when they can say, ‘Now I can swim 1000 feet—I’m a great swimmer and can do anything,’” said Thompson.
Big Blue Swim School is currently looking for potential partners to grow the franchise. Thompson described the ideal franchisee as someone who enjoys building teams, wants to make a difference, and has interest in building multiple locations. Potential franchisees should also have strong business and leadership skills and desire having visibility and getting involved in the community.
According to Chin, Big Blue Swim School’s real estate program is centered around the concept of “Plan the Work, and Work the Plan.”
“We strategically evaluate the specific marketplace where the franchisee is interested and compare it to what else is out there,” he said. “We take a systematic and data-driven approach to find the right locations that mitigate risk for franchisees and maximize potential upside. Right now, we are looking for the right fitness franchise partners, and as soon as we have them, we’ll push forward and start changing some lives.”
The total investment for one Big Blue Swim School location ranges from $1,787,500 to $3,646,000. To learn more about franchise opportunities.